Doom of the Misericord

The martyr’s grave is the foundation of the Imperium!
— Evocation to the Blessed Emperor

Junior Purser Darl takes Aenid, Calpurnia, Sanctus Machina and Baronet Riksdag to the nearest armoury, while Rollando accompanies the Sisters of the Void to their own armoury. Both groups equip with what they can, then head out to find the source of trouble – the Geller field generator for Rollando and the Sisters, and the Enginarium for other acolytes. The latter run into a cloud of frenzon that seems to have been altered to also cause confusion, and the former almost immediately running into a group of crazed crew members screaming, “Blood for the Blood God!” Both groups rapidly put down their opponents fairly rapidly, but Baronet Riksdag is wounded.

There are sounds of fighting coming from everywhere throughout the ship, and the victims of the altered frenzon are carving strange and repulsive signs in their own skin. As he advances with his group of Sisters, Rollando starts hearing a high-pitched giggling sound. He targets a group of giggling crew members with a grenade launcher and a frag grenade, hitting half a dozen with shrapnel. From the torn up bodies emerges a strange shape, bright pink and tentacly. Since he has loaded krak and frag grenades in alternance, Rollando uses the krak grenade to blow up a control panel near them and send more shrapnel flying. Every pink thing damaged turns into two blue things. When these are destroyed in turn, they dissolve into a puff of noxious blue smoke. Although the Sisters lose half of their numbers and Rollando is badly wounded, the group manages to put down all the creatures in front of them.

Rollando and the Sisters of the Void finally reach the Geller field generator. Through the porthole, Rollando can see that a multitude of sickening shapes from the Warp are clawing at the weakened field. Arcane symbols have been painted on the floor in the blood of the slain crew members. A dark shape emerges into view and Rollando recognizes an enemy he has not seen since Iocanthos…

The Crowfather – the Dancer in the Dark!

“Pray to me and your death will be swift!” he promises. Rollando answers by launching a frag grenade at him – in vain. Slain Sisters of the Void start transmogrifying into pink horrors! Rollando aims a krak grenade at the symbols on the deck to destroy them. In his head, he hears the voice of the Sword salvaged from the Righteous Path inviting him to use its help, but it is so twisted that Rollando is not inclined to agree, at first.

The Crowfather flies past the machinery and lands in front of Rollando, even as the pink things also claw at him. Rollando drops the grenade launcher and draws his lasgun, but his shot does not harm the enemy. The Crowfather raises it hands and utters foul syllables, and everything goes pitch dark. Rollando is heavily wounded and none of his weapons seem to present any threat to the enemy. The Sword is still seductively offering its help, so Rollando surrenders to it. The darkness disappears and the Sword instantly appears in his hand. The Crowfather hisses. “Leave now or be torn asunder!” says Rollando in an altered voice.

Rollando nimbly evades the Crowfather's web of darkness, A mighty blow of the Sword deals the Crowfather a good wound, so he retreats, flying out into the Warp. The pink horrors continue to claw at Rollando but with the Sword he makes short work of them. As he cleaves through the last of them, the Sword disappears and the lasgun is back in his hands. He erases the rest of the symbols on the deck then calls the bridge to ask for help in repairing the Geller field generator.

Junior Purser Darl, Aenid Fraal, Calpurnia Jemadar, Sanctus Machina and a badly wounded Baronet Riksdag reach, after running the gauntlet of crazed crew members, reach the Enginarium but find the door shut and unresponsive to Junior Purser Darl's access codes. It's also getting very cold in the ship, but it would be a 45-minute detour to head for life support. Sanctus Machina propitiates the machine spirits and discovers that they have been deprived of their proper sustenance as well as welded shut from the inside. Junior Purser Darl offer to get bulkhead cutters if Sanctus Machina can restore sustenance to the doors. Aenid accompanies Junior Purser Darl to get the bulkhead cutters; on the way back, they feel the fetid breath of Chaos.

Sanctus Machina succeeds in opening the doors, and the acolytes are greeted by a blast of warm air from the fires and firefights inside the Enginarium. They can see through the portholes that the Geller field is flickering and the ship is spinning end for end. Sanctus Machina communes with the machine spirits of the Misericord and discovers that scrap code has invaded the Aetheric Plane of the Enginarium and has been corrupting the benign machine spirits of the Engines. The artificial gravity is teetering near collapse, which would kill everyone on board. Sanctus Machina must go confront the scrap code spirits on the Aetheric Plane while Aenid and Calpurnia protect his physical body.

The Engine-Seer fights the corrupt scrap code spirits and destroys them, but not without taxing his own strength. Next, he reestablishes the gravity, frees the powers conduits, and invokes the halon spirits to suppress the fires, before collapsing from exhaustion.

Meanwhile, a group of crazed crew members with blasphemous symbols carved into their flesh charge, bringing with them a sarcophagus decorated with spikes and blades. A psychic attack hits Calpurnia, though she withstands it valiantly. She runs up to the sarcophagus and shoots it with her meltagun borrowed from the ship's armoury, damaging the sarcophagus. The crew men start chanting, invoking Cherubael, while Aenid discharges her shotgun repeatedly at them, and Darl follows suit with a lasgun. Another couple of psychic attacks from the sarcophagus reduce Calpurnia to unconsciousness.

The psychic blasts target Aenid next, but between her and Junior Purser Darl, they put down all of chanting cultists. Engine-Seer Sanctus Machina comes to, joins Aenid and Darl in shooting at the sarcophagus until they finally destroy its content, but not without taking great damage. Inside the burst sarcophagus they find the mangled, tortured body of Xanthia!

The survivors who are still conscious manage to rally the crew and fight off those affected by the frenzon and Chaos. Under Baronet Riksdag's care, Calpurnia comes to, but is still crippled; some of her recently installed cybernetic replacement organs have been destroyed. They have rallied the dozen or so survivors from the hundreds of the Enginarium crew, and the rest are dead. Junior Purser Darl is unable to get in contact with the bridge. They rest for a few moments, then Engine-Seer Sanctus Machina checks the com systems, and confirms that they are down but something is very wrong on the bridge. He's not sure whether life support is still present there. He also locates a large number of life signs inside one of the cargo holds.

The cargo hold is nearby, so they could check it out on their way to the bridge…

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